Written By Themba Khumalo on Tuesday, October 6, 2009 | Tuesday, October 06, 2009
Benni McCarthy: 31 (75 caps)
One of South Africa’s finest exports, Benni McCarthy has racked up 75 caps for Bafana Bafana and is the national team’s all time leading scorer with 31 goals, surpassing the record of 29 set by Shaun Bartlett.
The Cape Town-born striker has played for Seven Stars, Ajax Amsterdam, Celta Vigo, Porto and Blackburn Rovers in his club career. McCarthy announced himself to the world with four goals in a Nations Cup finals game against Namibia in 1998.
Shaun Bartlett: 29 (74 caps)
Faithful servant to Bafana Bafana who helped the national team win the 1996 Africa Cup of Nations on home soil and only retired from international football in 2005, having racked up 74 caps and scored 29 goals.
In fact, Bartlett was Bafana’s all-time leading scorer until last year when Benni McCarthy equalled and then broke his record. The Cape Town-born striker had a successful club career that saw him play in South Africa’s top flight, America, Switzerland and the English Premiership.
Phil Masinga: 18 (58 caps)
Masinga would be a Bafana Bafana legend even if it was just for ‘that goal’ in 1997 against the Republic of Congo that secured South Africa’s place at their first ever World Cup finals.
In fact, the tall striker was a faithful servant for the national team between 1992 and 2001, racking up 58 caps and scoring 18 goals to put him third on the all-time scorers’ list behind Benni McCarthy and Shaun Bartlett.
Siyabonga Nomvethe: 15 (72 caps)
Siyabonga ‘Bhele’ Nomvethe made 44 starts and 28 substitute appearances for Bafana Bafana in his international career. The speedy striker or winger racked up 15 goals in that time, putting him fourth on the all-time leading scorers’ list behind Benni McCarthy, Shaun Bartlett and Phil Masinga.
Included in those 15 goals was the historic strike against Slovenia in 2002 that handed South Africa their first and thus far only win at a World Cup tournament.
Sibusiso Zuma: 13 (67 caps)
Former captain of Bafana Bafana who made 67 appearances for the national team and scored 13 goals, putting him fifth on the all-time scorers’ list behind Benni McCarthy, Shaun Bartlett, Phil Masinga and Siyabonga Nomvethe.
Zuma, a striker or right winger, has spent the majority of his club career with FC Copenhagen and Arminia Bielefeld in Denmark and Germany respectively, though he returned to South African football with Mamelodi Sundowns in 2008.
Delron Buckley: 10 (72 caps)
Buckley was a versatile left winger or ‘second’ striker who has given Bafana Bafana great service down the years, appearing in 72 matches for the national team and chipping in with 10 goals.
The Durban-born player has spent most of his club career in Germany, mainly with VfL Bochum, though he is presently with second division outfit FSV Mainz 05. The left-footed represented South Africa at both the 1998 and 2002 FIFA World Cups.
Doctor Khumalo: 9 (50 caps)
One of the country’s most popular players and a key figure in helping Bafana Bafana win the 1996 Africa Cup of Nations, Doctor Khumalo is already regarded as a legend of South African football despite only retiring from his professional playing career in 2002.
The son of Eliakim ‘Pro’ Khumalo, Doctor went on to win 50 caps for the national team and scored nine goals, putting him seventh on the all time scorers’ list for Bafana Bafana.
Helman Mkhalele: 8 (66 caps)
‘Midnight Express’ was a charismatic winger who gave great service to Bafana Bafana in picking up 66 caps and scoring eight goals during his international career. He was part of the 1996 Africa Cup of Nations winning squad and the 1998 World Cup team.
Mkhalele enjoyed a fine club career that saw him win the 1995 African Champions League with Orlando Pirates before going on to play for nearly a decade in Turkish football.
Teko Modise: 9 (33 caps)
Modise has been the rising star of South African football since making his debut for Bafana Bafana in May 2007. In just over two years he has become a key player for the side, racking up 33 caps and scoring nine goals.
The 26-year-old is gifted with superb vision, passing ability and his ability to shoot from long range, be it from open play or a dead ball situation, makes him a genuine goal threat.
John Moshoeu: 8 (73 caps)
‘Shoes’ was one of the most charismatic players to pull on a Bafana Bafana shirt and in his terrific career with the national team he made 73 appearances and scored eight goals.
The Soweto-born midfielder played a vital role in helping South Africa win the 1996 Africa Cup of Nations and he only retired from international football in 2004. Moshoeu had a fine club career, playing for four different teams in Turkey and also having great success in two separate spells with Kaizer Chiefs.